Selling Your Home? Avoid These 3 Popular Renovation Projects

Karin Carr, Owner
Published on May 10, 2021

Seven point nine five.

That is how many years the average American homeowner lives in their home, according to the number crunchers at Attom Data.

You will eventually sell your home, and it does not matter where you are in this roughly eight-year period: at the beginning, the middle, or the conclusion of it. Renovating your home for your comfort and enjoyment is a wonderful idea; however, it is important to keep in mind that the changes you make to the house today may have an effect on the amount of time it takes to sell the house as well as the amount of money you get out of the deal.

In other words, investing $25,000 in remodeling will not necessarily mean you can tack on an extra $25,000 to the asking price when you sell the home.

Let’s take a look at some of the worst renovations you can make if you hope to get a payoff when you sell.

Installing wall-to-wall carpeting or hardwood flooring

There was a time when installing brand-new hardwood flooring or wall-to-wall carpeting would significantly increase the value of a property. Those times belong to the distant past.

The fact that flooring manufacturer Armstrong has discontinued its line of hardwood products is an indication that people in the United States have officially lost interest in hardwood flooring. And carpet?

Because Lowe’s was having so much trouble selling carpets, they made the decision to give out a free installation. They nonetheless experienced a drop in carpet sales of approximately 8% despite their best efforts.

Luxury vinyl is the material of choice among homebuyers nowadays, and prospective purchasers may assign a lower value to a property if they anticipate having to replace the flooring soon after moving in.

Selling Your Home? Avoid These 3 Popular Renovation Projects

Converting the garage

Garage conversions are far more popular in some areas than they are in others. They are especially popular in older neighborhoods with small homes.

Hey, who can blame someone for converting a garage into a bedroom when they need the space?

Just don’t expect that the conversion will translate into more money when the home is sold.

In fact, “If it’s not permitted, they’ll have a problem selling,” cautions George Holmes of Eagle Appraisal of Las Vegas.  And, if is permitted?

“It depends on the price class of the home,” Holmes said. “If it’s a cookie cutter home and it lacks a 2-car garage, we’ll deduct $8,000 to $10,000 from the value. It’s not cut and dry, however,” he cautions.

You can almost count on your home appraising for less than similar homes that have garages.

Permanent Conversion of a Bedroom

A home’s worth increases as it has more bedrooms. However, many homeowners choose to permanently transform the third bedroom into another space, such as an office, a fitness area, or a family room.

Although there is nothing fundamentally wrong with making any of these conversions, the value of the home will decrease if you are unable to convert the room back to a bedroom when you want to sell it.

The appraiser will compare your property to others that also have only two bedrooms because you have reduced the number of bedrooms in your home.

Better Ways to Spend the Money

In the event that deferred maintenance rears its ugly head, it won’t matter how much you update or rebuild a home; you will still end up losing money when you sell it.

Invest your money in less glamorous home improvement projects such as new heating, plumbing, and electrical upgrades, as well as anything that will make the home more appealing to potential buyers.

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